Street dogs and cats in Istanbul

What’s the deal with all these cats and dogs?

Cats and dogs are beloved pets all over the world. However in Istanbul it’s seems the streets are full of  street dogs and cats.

Cat food is widely distributed along the street curbs and dog and cat houses are found at shop entrances. These animals don’t look ill at all…. nor malnourished.

Have you noticed any dogs in Istanbul?

The dogs always remind me of that old Disney movie “Lady and the tramp” . These tramp lookalikes just wander around. Most of them just hang or lay around and look completely harmless. But be aware they are not your usual mini maltezer size. These big dogs are more Labrador lookalikes.

Scared of dogs?

Don’t worry,  if they have a plastig tag in their ear, they’ve been vaccinated for rabies. If they bite you. “You’ll be all fine”.

Dogs begging for Food?

There’s plenty of meat literally hanging and spinning around.  Every street corner has a Doner and Durum shop. I am sure the tramp  of “Lady and the tramp” would have set his eyes on that juicy meat. These dogs seem too relaxed to even glance at it.

My experience

Today one of my last days. I saw a shop attendant chase a dog with his broom.
When I got there the dog was outside the shop. Shaking his tale. Sticking his tongue out.
Looking for a way back inside.
I wish I could have taken a seat and just watch this spectacle.  This dog clearly wasn’t given in…. Who would win? Would the shop attendant get food for the dog to make sure he stays outside?
Shop attendants often try to sell you a spot or a product especially in Turkey. The shop attendant tried to seduice the dog to a spot in the corner outside.
The dog just looked at the shop attendant as if he was insane. Funny because that’s how I sometimes respond aswell…. I mean lunch/diner at 16.00 ?

So who won in the end…


Some of them seem to be hanging very often in the exact same place, making me wonder:

Are they really street dogs?

I’ll leave you to be the judge of that.

Cats are different

Cat in the street


Street cats seem to be Lady like they are from a royal breed.
Nothing like the underdog tramp lookalikes. They take pride in their appearance and are not scared of people.




Cat inbetween shoes


Pet cats are frequently welcoming you at shop entrances or even displaying in the window shop or even part of the displayed decor.
Cats are truly adored in this city!


Do you have  any stories about these street cats or dogs? I would love to hear about them.

One thought on “Street dogs and cats in Istanbul

  1. Tahsin Deniz Arpaci May 8, 2019 / 3:06 am

    Good news. It should not be something easy to be street dog…

    Liked by 1 person

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